Let Jesus spark joy in your life

Rev Keith Mack, the minister at St John's and King's Park Church, Dalkeith
Rev Keith Mack, the minister at St John's and King's Park Church, Dalkeith

In our house after the rush of Christmas and the hub bub of the New Year, January begins slowly and we usually turn to the thought of tidying the house! We have three kids who love MESS! Donna and I try our best to keep on top of it, but it is always a struggle!

This last year I discovered a book from Japan called “Spark Joy” and I love it, and it has changed my life! (I am still trying to work on the family!)

This book by a young Japanese woman’s on decluttering and organising has sold two million copies worldwide. The heart of Marie Kondo’s message is helping people get rid of unneeded things in their homes and wardrobes—things that weigh them down. “Hold up each item,” she says, “And ask, ‘Does it spark joy?’” If the answer is yes, keep it. If the answer is no, then give it away.

How many things are you clinging on to that drag you down? In your personal life as well as in your cupboards? Are you worried, angry, on whom do you bear a grudge?

Jesus said, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” The joy Jesus is talking about is unique: ‘My joy.’ And it’s fulfilling in a way that the world’s happiness isn’t: ‘That your joy may be complete.’ Being a faithful follower of Christ’s teachings brings joy that’s real and resilient despite finances, debts, illness and even death. You can’t be happy without being joyful, but you can be joyful without being happy! What? How’s that possible? Nothing can compare to the love of God. His love isn’t based on looks, personality, wealth, or even moral goodness. It’s offered without any conditions. God’s love guarantees His acceptance when all others have rejected you, His forgiveness when others have judged you and His mercy when all others have condemned you. When you experience His love, you experience a sparking of joy that you could perhaps never expect!.

Looking at our own lives every day, our responsibilities and duties we see that not all of them are enjoyable. But we can ask, “How can this spark joy in God’s heart and in my own?” A change in why we do things can bring a revolution in the way we feel about them.

How can you “spark joy” today? What do you need to let go of? Who or what do you need to hold close?